Marc Guehi has spoken about his South London roots after penning a five-year deal at Crystal Palace.
The 21-year-old, who joined from Chelsea yesterday, is Patrick Vieira’s third signing since being appointed as the new Eagles boss this month.
Guehi started off playing junior football at Cray Wanderers before joining the Blues academy.
Speaking to Palace TV, Guehi said: “I was born in the Ivory Coast, born in Abidjan. I came here at the age of one and have lived in England all my life.
“I grew up mainly in Lewisham, so I know the area. I obviously moved closer to where I was at Chelsea but I’m a London boy and know exactly what it’s about to be a London boy.
“When you’re from South London, it’s really exciting, you know what the feel’s about, what the fans are about and you have that connection.
“Selhurst Park is one of the stadiums in the Premier League that has the best fans, it’s always rocking there. It’s a fantastic atmosphere, so I’m hopefully going to experience that one day.”
The 21-year-old defender says one of his career highlights was winning the FIFA U17 World Cup while he was playing for England’s U17 side.
“That was a fantastic experience,” said Guehi. “Just to be a part of something like that so young in the England set-up, playing with the likes of Phil Foden who plays for Manchester City, and Jadon Sancho. It was fantastic for me personally.”
Guehi has been at Chelsea since the age of seven but can’t wait to work with Vieira.
“I’m very excited. It’s a great opportunity for me to come to such a big club in the Premier League. I’m really excited to get going.
“It was the direction the club is taking, a really exciting direction with the new gaffer that’s come in. A lot of young players are here and obviously such a stable club with top players really enticed me and made me want to come here.
“Patrick Vieira’s speaks for himself. The player he was, the way he conducts himself and even recently as a manager, he has a really good record. When he was at Nice, he did some really good work and I’m really excited to work with him.”
PICTURE: SEB FREJ/cpfc.co.uk
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